Letters: Maple Ridge a new Riverview?

Letter writer: Don’t let B.C Housing and the government turn Maple Ridge into a new Riverview

Maple Ridge is trying to avoid more campsites in urban areas.

Editor, The News:

My first question is, did BC Housing and the provincial government give $15 million to every other municipality to build a shelter and support services in their communities?

Of course not. The B.C. government decided that Maple Ridge will be the new Riverview. My point is, the provincial government and BC Housing have chosen Maple Ridge as the new centre of resources for the Lower Mainland’s and Vancouver’s homeless problem.

Why was the Quality Inn going to be turned into 60 units when the so-called number at the time was 40 homeless in Maple Ridge?

More homeless would be brought into our community by BC Housing and the government to fill the empty units.

I watched an interview with the Port Coquitlam mayor as he stated he supports the shelter being built in Maple Ridge and would contribute resources to Maple Ridge. Anything to keep the homeless,  out of his community.

I like the way Port Coquitlam handled its homeless problem.

You used to see them standing on the middle divider at Lougheed Highway and Shaughnessy Street with a sign asking for money every red light. How did the city deal with that? They put up a metal fence along the divider.

The homeless used to hang out and sleep under the foot bridge at Lougheed Highway and Shaughnessy Street.

How did the city deal with that? They blocked the area under the foot bridge with a tall metal fence to refuse access. The homeless used to sleep in the big hedges over on Tyner Street.

How did the city deal with that? They cut all the bottom branches so the homeless had no cover in the trees. They moved on.

Where do you think the PoCo homeless live now?  One of the big reasons we do have the homeless problem in Maple Ridge is because of the Salvation Army’s (Ridge Meadows Ministries) Caring Place.

When you give out three free meals a day, shower and laundry so that the people can use their welfare money for drugs, of course they are going to come from far and wide.

We have to take back our streets. We can start by shutting down the Caring Place and put our support into the food banks.

Don’t let B.C Housing and the government turn Maple Ridge into a new Riverview with a $15-million shelter that we all know will be filled with those already here, in addition to the ones the government and other cities will send to us.

Please everyone, stand up now before it is too late!

Build it and they will come? Feed them and they will stay

Steve Tretick

Maple Ridge

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